Allardyce, English Football Association part by mutual consent

Friday, September 30, 2016

On Tuesday, The English Football Association (FA) announced manager Sam Allardyce had resigned from his management duties due to "inappropriate conduct". Allardyce was appointed as manager for the English men's national team ten weeks ago.

File photo of Sam Allardyce, 2014.
Image: Brian Minkoff-London Pixels.

61-year-old Allardyce's appointment as manager on July 22 filled the spot vacated by Roy Hodgson after Iceland defeated England in the UEFA Euro 2016 Last 16. In an investigation carried by The Telegraph correspondents, Sam Allardyce negotiated a deal worth £400,000 (about US$520,000) with supposed businessmen to bypass FA rules on the summer player-transfer market.

Representing an imaginary company based in the Far East, the investigators, portraying themselves as businessmen, sought evidence of corruption in English football. In discussion with them, Allardyce said some agents evade the FA rules, introduced in 2008, preventing a third party from owning a player. Allardyce called these rules "ridiculous".

Allardyce criticised his predecessor Hodgson and his assistant Gary Neville. He said Hodgson was an ineffective public speaker because he lacked "personality". Of Neville, Allardyce commented he should have been asked to "sit down and shut up". He said the national team should not select players who are not played by their clubs. He also added that the English players under Hodgson were not up to their potential because they were unable to cope psychologically.

He said the FA is "stupid" to spend money redeveloping the Wembly Stadium. He said, "They [the FA] stupidly spent £870 million on Wembley, so they're still paying that debt off. [...] If they'd built it anywhere else, it would have cost about £400 million".

Allardyce apologised to the FA and said, "Although it was made clear during the recorded conversations that any proposed arrangements would need the FA's full approval, I recognize I made some comments which have caused embarrassment. [...] I also regret my comments with regard to other individuals".

The English FA announced current England U-21 manager Gareth Southgate would be the interim national team manager for upcoming games against Malta, Slovenia, Scotland, and Spain. Allardyce's spell lasted for only 67 days, making him the shortest serving manager for the Three Lions. Allardyce managed England for only one game which was a 1–0 victory against Slovakia.